On Friday, Jeff Goodman shared a proposal the NCAA is considering that would overhaul the recruiting process. Under the proposal, the NCAA would set up youth development camps in collaboration with USA Basketball, the NBA, and the NBA Players Association to identify which recruits should be allowed to speak to agents to decide whether to go to the pros or to college should the one-and-done rule go away. Up to 1,200 rising seniors, 900 rising juniors, and 300 rising sophomores would be invited to the camps, which would take place during the month of July.
The proposal has been met with mixed reviews, and John Calipari couldn’t resist weighing in during his appearance on Kentucky Sports Radio this morning.
“How do you decide who are the high school guys that should put their names in [the draft] and come out? How do you decide that? Do you want 1,000 tenth graders thinking they’re coming right out? Don’t care about academics? Who now can’t even get into a university? Who’s going to take care of those kids, society wise? Are we all just going to say, ‘Yeah, they were taught, it’s up to them’? They’re 16, 15-years-old. They can’t make logical decisions at that age. They’re all going to be thinking they’re going. How do we make a decision, which 10 or 12 go directly to the league? How do we make that decision? That’s my concern.”
Under the proposal, USA Basketball would identify the “elite senior prospects” and allow them to have an agent to evaluate their options. Calipari didn’t seem too keen about the prospect of dealing with agents during the recruiting process.
“We want to let the agents get with the kids at an earlier date. I’m okay with that, but now you’re making me go recruit agents. I’ve got to go recruit agents now. I’ve never been involved with agents, ever. My kids go to every agent out there. I don’t even talk to agents. At the end of the year, the players go with who they want to go with. I don’t get involved. Well, guess what? If the agents are going to be involved with kids when they’re in high school, I’m going to have to be involved with agents. Not only me, but other coaches. Is that we want? Because that’s where this is going.”
The proposal would also allow undrafted underclassmen to return to school, which, on the surface, makes a lot of sense, but as Calipari pointed out, could lead to issues with scholarships.
“We’re talking about letting kids go through the draft and then come back to college. Well, what if there’s no scholarships for them when they come back after the draft? Can they go wherever they want? There’s some issues we’ve got to deal with if we’re doing it.”
With the one-and-done rule rumored to be on its way out by 2020, college basketball as we know it is going to change. Calipari assured fans that whatever happens, Kentucky will continue to thrive.
“If it happens, I’m not worried about it. We’ll figure out what we do and Kentucky’s going to eat first anyways. It doesn’t matter. If anybody thinks, ‘Well, this takes out Kentucky,’ you’re mistaken.”